Times Square in New York City isn’t the only spot to ring in 2015. It might be one of the most iconic, but if you’re a skier, you’d probably rather be trolling for powder than freezing your baguettes off waiting to atch a ball drop. But skiing over New Year’s doesn’t mean missing out on all the parties and revelry—it just means doing the holiday differently.
From fireworks to torchlight parades, ski resorts go all out to usher in the new year. The holiday is practically like their Fourth of July. Here’s how 11 spots are celebrating the end of 2014 and the beginning of 2015.
If there’s a must-do New Year’s Eve event in Utah, it’s Alta’s torchlight parade. Brave the cold, navigate successfully on skis without poles while holding a lit torch or flare, and ski slowly and in control down a not-super-wide cat track at the resort’s annual torchlight parade open to any and all Alta guests. As if the participatory torchlight parade wasn’t enough (many resorts offer torchlight parades at Christmas and/or New Year’s but it’s more to watch not ski), fireworks go off while you’re skiing down and there are more to watch once you hit the base and extinguish your flame.
2. Arapahoe Basin
Guests at Arapahoe Basin can ring in 2015 on the Continental Divide in a rustic, romantic setting in the glow of the full moon. Chef Christopher Rybak serves a gourmet four-course meal at mid-mountain’s Black Mountain Lodge that begins at 7 p.m. Attendees celebrate New Year’s Eve with New York at 10 p.m. with a glass of champagne and party favors. This event is lift-served and costs $98 plus tax.
The Twelve Days of Aspen wraps up New Year’s Eve with two fireworks shows that light up Aspen Mountain. In addition to the fireworks, plenty of people in town are ringing in 2015 at one of the many prix fixe dinners and free flowing champagne parties. For more information, visit www.aspenchamber.org.
While Little Cottonwood Canyon has Alta’s torchlight parade, Park City skiers can head to the Canyons for its annual New Year’s Eve festivities. The resort’s torchlight parade starts off the night while a fireworks display sets the Park City resort aglow to end the evening.
5. Copper Mountain
After plenty of skiing, holiday shopping, happy hours, events, discounts and surprises, the Twelve Days of Copper culminates December 31 with a New Year’s celebration worth attending. The evening starts with a rail jam, followed by a kid’s glow-stick pageant and torchlight parade, and it all ends with a fireworks display at Burning Stones Plaza at 10 p.m.
6. Crested Butte Mountain Resort
It wouldn’t be New Year’s at Crested Butte without fireworks and a torchlight parade. The fireworks are best seen from the deck at Butte 66–and they’re sure to light up the Rocky Mountain sky. Then stick around for the live music and drink specials that go on long after the party starts at 5:30 p.m.
Its tradition for Monarch to hold a New Year’s Eve party, complete with fireworks, torchlight parade and local brews. The party starts as soon as the lifts close at 4 p.m. This year, Monarch is hosting a bigger bash than usual in celebration of its 75th Anniversary.
Powderhorn’s New Year’s festivities will feature its annual Torchlight Parade and Fireworks display, with music playing throughout the day and an after-party in the lodge following the fireworks. The Torchlight Parade and fireworks can be seen all across the valley below.
9. Purgatory at Durango Mountain Resort
Purgatory ushers in the New Year with a Torchlight Parade and Fireworks Display, as well as a celebration for kids at 10 p.m. with party favors, and a celebration at midnight for adults with live music and a New Year’s Eve toast.
10. Ski Granby Ranch
Guests of Ski Granby Ranch, which is just 15 minutes from Winter Park, can ring in the New Year at a family dance party from 4:00-9:30 p.m. A glow stick parade, torchlight parade, and fireworks begin at 6 p.m.
At Steamboat, it’s the instructors that help provide some of the New Year’s Eve entertainment. The Steamboat Snowsports School treats guests to spectacular on-snow parades down the mountain lit only by torches. In conjunction with the torchlight parades, a fireworks display will illuminate the sky, providing a perfect ending to the evening.